Monday, November 23, 2009

Be Who and What You Want to Be

A life authentically lived is a great honor, a grand prize to hang on your mantle of life's victories. To be successful and happy in life is a major achievement in and of itself. And you know, it doesn't really matter if you make a gazillion dollars and have millions of fans. What is important is being you, on whatever level you can, just starting somewhere on the road to authenticity and seeing where it leads you. In this world it is too easy to get bogged down with all the responsibilities and details, and end up putting your dreams and passions upon a shelf where they eventually rust and become dusty or rotten.

In my journey to authentic living, I have come to understand success in a whole new light. The first book I ever wrote was a book of poetry. In a few years time, I sold a thousand copies of it, which is small potatoes in the large spectrum of things, but you know something, I felt magical out there doing book signings, and a book tour, having my books selling in many large bookstores in several states. I was in the playing field with the pros. It didn't matter to me that I was not world famous. I was being authentically me, living according to the dictates of my soul. I was letting out my light for all the world to see. A lot of people responded to me well too. In his book 10 Secrets for Success and Inner Peace, Wayne Dyer says, "Listen to your music, and do what you know you have to do to feel whole, to feel complete, and to feel as if you're fulfilling your destiny. You'll never be at peace if you don't get that music out and let it play. Let the whole world know why you are here, and do it with passion."

If you wanna be an athlete, an artist, a speaker, teacher, inventor, songwriter, architect or whatever, then get yourself into motion. Figure out what these people do and start imitating them. Success always leaves clues. I have observed that people who are happy and fulfilled are out there doing what makes them happy, whenever and however they can. Some people make a living sharing their gifts and passions, others do it as a side hobby, or even just for fun. Either way, they are all expressing their unique gifts and talents. They are all coming from a place of giving, joy, enthusiasm and love. You might as well do something with those gits and talents. Your passion and enthusiasm are gifts from the Great Spirit. If you fail to use them and share them with others, then you miss out on one of life's most delicious experiences.

There is a price for living this way though. Others may ridicule, scorn or mock you and even call you a fool. On the other token, others may be dazzled by you and flock to you. By doing what you love and feel moved to do, you spark a fire inside your soul, which turns into a flame within. Others see and feel it in you. Your magic soon becomes visible, electric and magnetizing. You may start to attract spectators. You may even attract fame or fortune.

To Be Who and What You Want to Be, all you have to do is listen to the whisperings in your soul, in the inner recess of your being. Look within for guidance. There is a charted course laid out for you to follow, a course set out and designed by the highest part of yourself-your soul. When you access its wisdom, you will be living from the core of who you are and who you were meant to be. The soul will constantly guide you to your highest good, your ultimate calling and destiny. It will carry you on colorful, feathered wings over life's despairs, disappointments, and illusions to magical places, toward an enchanted destiny waiting for only you...

Copyright Justin Topik 2009

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Get Your Head Into the Game

It's Friday night and the crowd is anxiously awaiting the anticipated game in the stands. There is a slight chill in the moist, September air. Your team is huddled together, ready to march onto the field. The band is playing. You are getting ready to go to battle with the opposing team. You are psyched, pumped up, your heart is pounding. It is time to put your game face on and get into the game. You have to do this before you enter onto the field. Victory starts even before the game begins. Most people win or lose a game before they even step foot onto the playing field.

The game of life is no different. You have to figure out what you want, put your game face on, Get Your Head Into the Game, and go after what you want as if nothing can stop you, or stand in your way. And when opportunity arises, you have to seize the moment, reach out and grab it tightly with both hands and don't let go. You have to Get Your Head Into the Game and keep it in the game. This means preparing yourself mentally and emotionally, physically and spiritually and then keeping yourself fine tuned in all these areas, which takes a lot of self discipline, a lot of effort. I have found in my own life that to be a great athlete in sports, or in the game of life demands rigorous self discipline, personal responsibility and a high level of confidence. These key components help you to be prepared before the game even starts. A major part of responsibility is taking responsibility for your attitude from moment to moment and cultivating within yourself thoughts of empowerment, victory and success. Self confidence is another huge factor here. Confidence is key to achieving any worthwhile goal and is the result of being competent at something, being prepared, putting yourself in and maintaining peak performance states. It also stems from an inner connection to the sustaining force of the universe. Knowing who you are and your relationship to something greater than you has immense power in creating personal confidence. This type of confidence is an inner, radiant confidence that comes from within.

Whatever you are doing, if you want to do it successfully, you've gotta do it wholeheartedly. In whatever you arena you would like to be successful in, you've gotta actually be on the field. You have to get into the game. If you are not falling on your ass, you are not really in the game. Many people try to pursue their dreams from the sidelines without ever achieving the results they would like to achieve. An example of this is, while I was living in Nashville, Tennessee for many years pursuing a career as a songwriter, it was amazing to me how many people I met who were there supposedly pursuing a music career, who just appeared to me as spectators. These people never sang in any clubs, never recorded any of their music, or did any networking, while I was out doing all that stuff. I met some highly talented songwriters who didn't really dive into the business, but instead, just dabbled in it. They were what I call closet performers and mainly suffered from fear of failure, or fear of not being good enough. Those two fears can paralyze you and take you out of the game of life before the contest even begins.

To Get Your Head Into The Game requires you looking and acting like a winner, carrying yourself like one even before you achieve the success you desire. Pat Riley said in his book The Winner Within, "If you're going to be a championship team, you have to think championship thoughts." This requires knowing how to psych yourself up, not out, and how to channel and broadcast positive recordings in your mind.

Whatever you want to be good at, do it often with inner zeal and passion. Throw yourself into the game even if you aren't 100% prepared. Take some chances, put yourself out there. Get Your Head Into the Game and you will find the playing experience becomes much richer and exciting. You will never win a game you never start, or one you just watch from the sidelines. A quote I really like is, "Life is too short to be little" by Benjamin Disraeli. To be a champion you have to think and act like one. Be the hero in your own life story. Live a courageous, inspiring life and you will have no regrets.
Copyright Justin Topik 2009

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Today is the Day

Life is a series of winding paths. Sometimes it is full of roses, skies painted with dazzling rainbows and golden streets, other times it is full of thorns, potholes and heartbreaking sorrows. And yet, your life is what you make of it, bottom line, as with each new day. Everyday is a miniature lifetime and a day in which we get to begin our life all over again on a clean slate. Anthony Robbins said in his book Awaken the Giant Within, "The past does not equal the future." It doesn't matter if failure has plagued your yesterdays. What matters is what you do with today. Today is a splendiforous, glorious new day. It's a day for new beginnings, new adventures and new explorations. It is a day for you to re-define you, to start off on an exciting, breath taking, spectacular and colorful odyssey. The beauty of God is that he/she is a God of new beginnings. He/she doesn't focus on our failures and weaknesses of yesterday, but instead sees the picture of where we are headed-our bright tomorrows.

Today is the Day for whatever you would like to begin, but have put on a shelf for that special SOMEDAY. We've all heard the phrase, "the road to someday, leads to nowhere." If there is anything you have been procrastinating out of fear of the unknown, fear of failing, of not being good enough, prepared enough, pretty enough, or even fear of your own inner strength or whatever, I challenge you to start it today. Take that first step you have been putting off-the one you know you need to take. Open a new door to a new reality, discover a hidden world only seen in your imagination. There is a road paved with solid gold waiting to unfold before you. There is power in the NOW and power in you NOW. The fruit is ripe, ready to be harvested. There is no time like the present. There is power in taking your first stride. There is power in motion.

Today is the Day to start living the life you secretly dream about living, the one no one else knows about. If you only knew the power to change any circumstance in your life, you would be astonished. I want you to repeat aloud, "I have the power to change virtually anything in my life." Any circumstance, any limitation, any problem or challenge lies within your power to transcend and overcome. Exercise your personal power. Strengthen those decision making, commitment, faith and determination muscles. Make some goals. Stretch yourself a little bit. Today is the Day to spread your wings and see just how high you can fly!

Copyright Justin Topik 2009

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Finding Your Rhythm

As hard as it seems to believe, there is rhythm to life's madness, an energizing, soothing, mesmerizing rhythm. And although it is very present, finding this rhythm is not always a breeze to do. The pace of this world is much different than the pace of the spirit. Nature has its own rhythm though, its own melody. And when we walk to and live in accord to the rhythm of this melody, we experience health, vitality, inner peace, happiness and harmony. Conversely, when we get too far away from it, we experience ill health, anxiety, depression, and irritability. Nature holds great secrets of the peaceful reality, the true way of the spiritual path and life. It is the rhythm we must all learn to walk to, to be closer to spirits grace. All great spiritual teachers have spent much time in contemplation in natures domain. It is a great place to gather wisdom, serenity and inner peace, a place to connect with your innermost being.

Nature knows no hustle and bustle, no hurry or worry. Everything in nature takes its own sweet time. Watching the snow or rain fall, the ocean coming rhythmically into the shore, clouds drifting slowly across the sky, a river slowly moving along and seasons changing, we are reminded there is better pace of life, a better way of being. Sometimes our chaotic lives can begin to feel like the norm, but peace is essentially our true nature, not chaos. We just don't realize it, cause we loose ourselves in this fast paced, sometimes harsh world. Yet, when we slow down and take moments to flow with spirit and invite more spirit into our lives, it comes, and we start to realize just how much harmony is a vital part of our true nature.

This peace and serenity is something you have to grow into though. You get used to the peace and harmony after a while. It becomes the norm, instead of the constant chaos, the constant chattering in your mind. Finding Your Rhythm is learning to walk more closely with the flow of nature, the pace of creation and spirit-the rhythm and flow of all life. Returning to this rhythm is a return to a more spiritual state. To the Native Americans the drumbeat has always been a vital and important part in their tradition, because it symbolizes the heartbeat of all creation. It reminds us to walk to that steady, but not frenzied pace. In the Tao Te Ching, it says, "Do your work, then step back. The only path to serenity." This to me means don't be too attached to things going a certain way. Don't stress yourself out to make something happen. Do your work then let go and flow, detach yourself from outcomes.

Inner peace is a great gift of priceless value. Let the rhythm of the natural world guide you back into a closer communion with spirit. It's rhythm will help you find your own rhythm. Her wisdom, grace, beauty and natural strength is there to serve as a constant reminder to us of our true selves, our true natures.

Copyright Justin Topik 2009

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Inviting More Joy and Abundance Into Your Life

What if all you had to do to attract more joy and abundance into your life was to open the door, allow spirits presence and transformative energy to come through and then simply invite more of these things into your life? I know you are probably thinking, "sure, sounds like that hippie, feel good, new age stuff right? It's not that simple or effortless to attract more joy and abundance." Trust me I have been there too as a skeptic. But, as I have consciously awakened over the years, I have learned different, better, more highly evolved ways of thinking and being, some of which I would like to share with you right now.

To invite someone or something into your space, or reality is to grant them permission to enter, to allow an entrance of some sort. Suppose you invite someone into your house, you allow them into your sacred space. You open the door so they can walk in. To invite more joy and abundance into your life works exactly the same way. You simply open the door, make a space for these things, begin to hope, believe and prepare for their arrival. Like cleaning out a room in your house for a new child, you are making a space for new life to grow and flourish. You know this new soul is coming and you plan for its arrival, wholeheartedly believing and expecting it to show up.

Until you make a space in your life for something, you can't have it. To make a space for whatever it is you are seeking or desiring is to fully CHOOSE something. Choosing though is a lot different than wanting. Try saying to yourself aloud right now, "I want more joy and abundance!" Then say to yourself, "I CHOOSE to experience having more joy and abundance." Which one feels better to you, feels more real and infused with power and creative potential? Choosing, rather than desiring or wanting something is the fastest way to experience whatever it is you are trying to experience, because when you choose something, your want or desire changes to a faith filled belief and expectation.

Too often we focus on what we don't want in our lives, what we can't have, or can't experience. By doing this, we make too much of a space, or compartment for the things we don't want to experience and thus end up experiencing more of these things. Part of Inviting More Joy and Abundance Into Your Life is consciously monitoring and choosing your thoughts wisely, because thoughts are things too, and have life shifting potential. You have to focus more on what you would like to experience, rather than on what you don't want to experience.

Another secret to attracting abundance and joy into your life is to give them away. Share your joy and abundance in whatever capacity you are able. Share whatever gifts and talents you have to offer, whenever possible. Often what we have to share is much more relevant and valuable to others than we could ever comprehend. It's like the butterfly effect. By flapping your figurative wings, the effects of your actions have far reaching consequences.

If you are serious about Inviting More Joy and Abundance Into Your Life, you have to make a conscious decision right now to open the windows and doors to your heart, soul and mind. And as you make a place for these things to enter into your life, welcome them with open arms. Affirm to the universe right now, "I welcome more joy and abundance into my life. I make a place for them to enter into my life right now, I invite them in!" Everything has energy. Even joy and abundance operate at a certain energy frequency. As you open the door to this frequency, I promise you, you will open a door to a new, exciting and wondrous realm.

Copyright Justin Topik 2009

Sunday, November 8, 2009

The Highest Authority Lies Within You

What if there was a TV channel, or radio station you could tune into, to receive direct revelation from God, Allah, Yahweh, or the Universal Spirit? Well, newsflash... here's a little secret in case you don't already know, the signal is being transmitted right now and is actually being sent, ALL the time. The problem may be your receiver is just a little dusty, or maybe a little bit out of use. The good news is you can always fine tune your receiver and learn how to tune in and listen to it often. Each of us has a direct link to eternal wisdom and a direct communication channel broadcasting a LIVE signal from our creator. It's like a built in walkie talkie. In the extraordinary book Conversations With God by Neale Donald Walsch, he says in reference to the voice within, "It is the radar that sets the course, steers the ship, guides the journey if you but let it."

This voice is what I am referring to by saying, The Highest Authority Lies Within You. Rumi said, "You have within you a deciding force that knows what to receive, what to turn from!" You have to learn to trust, and validate this voice, this force on your journey towards becoming a more integrated, authentic, spiritual being. This voice is the highest authority you should trust in your entire life. It will give you all the answers you need on your life's path. The beautiful thing about it is, it is already inside you now. The Highest Authority Lies Within You. It is your conscience, inner voice, inner spirit, your inner wisdom, or the voice of your higher self.

So, who is entitled to this inner wisdom? All of us can receive direct inspiration from our source or God. EVERYONE is entitled to this two way form of communication. It seems to me that much organized religion discourages people from thinking and living this way. They call it blasphemy. I have seen for myself and come to believe that a lot of religion oftentimes discourages you from seeking personal revelation, and from trusting yourself, or relying on yourself for wisdom, guidance and direction. I think a big part of this is because if you start to rely upon your direct wisdom from God within, then eventually you establish a strong connection, you get strong signals, and you don't need to rely solely upon the church anymore. Also, at this point, you don't have to rely on the church and church leaders authority. I believe this is the churches fear. Maybe it's because there is a lot of money and false sense of authoritative power there? Either way, this issue has been one of the biggest battles in the past two thousand years. Church leaders from many different traditions have done everything they could in their power to cast out and denounce any wisdom, teachings or texts that led members into a personal relationship to spirit.

I fully believe true leaders always lead you to uncover and discover your own guiding force, your highest truth, your highest, innermost wisdom though. Ralph Waldo Emerson said in his provocative book, Self Reliance, "The faith that stands on authority is not faith." I have to absolutely agree with that quote. I was raised in a religion that I was thrown out of for questioning authority.

But I think it is healthy and necessary to question authority. Abraham Lincoln said, "Question everything, even God." Questioning is how we find out for ourselves what is true for us. If you just accept everything on blind faith, then you miss out on forming a COMMUNION WITH THE FATHER. You miss out on a relationship with the highest authority, the guiding force which can shape and inspire your life. Wayne Dyer said once, "You are a divine creation of God. You can never be separate from that which created you." It's the same with a mother and child. There is a bond which time and space cannot ever separate! And with that bond, there is an ever present, always active energy/soul connection.

Copyright Justin Topik 2009

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Live Life on Your Terms

Imagine if you could create an extraordinarily vivid, colorful, enchanting blueprint for your life. Let's just say you were an architect and you had the ability and the know how, to make a master design for your life. And starting with this well constructed, drawn out blueprint, you were then able to materialize this design into a phenomenal work of art. And in this master design, you could include the dream job you are totally passionate about, the amount of money you would like to be earning, the type of house you could see yourself living in, the perfect mate for you, and all the details of how you'd like your ideal, daily life to look like. Also, you could include in this design all the goals you'd like to accomplish in the next say, 5-10 years, the exotic travels you'd like to experience. Let's just say that you are a brilliant architect and that anything is possible and failure isn't even a possibility.

I want you to know that I fully believe with every ounce of my entire being that you are the master architect of your life. I am here to remind you that you can design and Live Life on Your Terms. You can create and design a life that you love. You can make a life rather than a living for yourself. Somewhere inside of you, I am certain there is a brilliant architect just waiting to be discovered.

To Live Life on Your Terms takes a lot of personal responsibility though. In fact, you are the only one who can create this type of life for yourself, well with God's help of course. It has to be a partnership if you really wanna experience lasting joy, success and abundance. I have learned that if you don't include God in your plans, the foundation of your constructed masterpiece will not be rock solid and may collapse at any given moment. Masterpieces take time though. The Sistine chapel wasn't painted overnight. And sometimes too, spirit unfolds plans to us for our lives in its own time. We have to exercise patience and wisdom in creating our master plans.

In his book, The Winner Within, Pat Riley, famous NBA coach says, "Every now and then there comes a day where someplace, sometime, you simply have to plant your feet, stand firm and make a point about who you are and what you believe in." To Live Life on Your Terms takes this kind of commitment and dedication. You have to stand up firmly for the kind of life you are committed to having and living. You have to take responsibility and bring it into being. Life is too short to be dull tasting. Live your life with flavor. It's YOUR life we are talking about here!!!

Copyright Justin Topik 2009

Monday, November 2, 2009

The Wisdom of a Turtle

I'm speeding along at a frenetic pace, running late for work again. I get to the office 20 minutes late. I'm feeling utterly stressed as I hustle and bustle trying to catch up and get everything done I need to accomplish for the day. I end up leaving work an hour late. I drive through downtown, racing through the city full of bright lights, surrounded by a thousand noises from every direction. Fighting traffic, with ten thousand other people, I'm trying to get home in time to go to my sons basketball game. As I turn off the freeway and onto the highway, all of a sudden I see something in the middle of the road. I slam on my brakes, and there directly in front of my car, taking his own sweet time is this amazingly large turtle crossing the road. At first I'm angry-just something else to slow me down, but instead, I'm suddenly captivated by his mystery and gracefulness. And I think to myself, why can't I be more like him? What an amazing animal he is. For a few minutes while I wait for him to cross the road, I completely forget about my stress, my worries and the fact that I am going to be 15 minutes late for my sons game. As I drive off, my focus has suddenly been shifted. The great spirit, or God has sent me an extraordinary reminder. I offer up a prayer of gratitude for the small miracle I have just witnessed.

The turtle is a mighty creature revered by many cultures around the world. He has much to teach if we will but listen. He is natures perfect balance-a tough outer shell with a tender soft heart. The turtle walks quietly, in stride with the pace of the universe. He is in no great rush to get wherever he is going. Because of his slow movement, he is much more aware of what's going on around him. The turtle reminds us to slow down and go with the flow, to keep a smooth and steady pace, keeping in stride with the Tao (pace of nature), to be in the moment and savor the moment, to take in all the moments of life. He is strong, independent. He understands the art of patience, tranquility, balance and inner harmony.

The Native Americans believed that the turtle represented healing, nurturing, mother energy, survival, longevity, protection, patience, persistence, and knowledge. Turtles encourage us to be in the flow, to enjoy the journey, the path we are on, without hurrying the pace. They teach us to take things one step at a time and be patient in attaining our goals. Turtles show us a new perception of time and our relationship with it. They are like a river that moves ever so slowly, yet powerfully and forcefully, one step at a time towards a seemingly unknown destination. They remind us to dance with the universal dance.

The turtle reminds us to keep an impenetrable shell, to go within ourselves for guidance and protection at any given moment. Buddha once said, "Even as a border city guarded well within, without, so guard ye well yourselves. See that the moment pass not vainly by. " The turtle is the perfect depiction of both of these things-guarding ourselves and not letting the moment vainly pass by. Like the turtle, we must learn to go within ourselves for wisdom, guidance and protection.

That day, I learned much from an unusual animal encounter. The Wisdom of a Turtle is astounding. I once read a remarkable quote somewhere, that we are human BE-ings, not human DO-ings. We get too caught up in the doing and not enough in just being. Let us be more like turtles savoring every step along our journeys, remembering that all of life is a process and that ultimately, the journey is the destination.

Copyright Justin Topik 2009